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21 hours ago

Really nice trail
Scenery along the trail was just lovely
GPS sent us out of the way but we eventually found it
I would do it again if asked
So nice there

This is a great hike with a great view and fire tower at the top. Not too difficult for a Saranac 6 peak. Great trail and rewarding.

Love this hike. Dislike the crowds.

The fire tower is a great reward at the end of the trail, but at some places there are slippery and/or loose rocks that make the way back down challenging. No plateaus or view points anywhere except at the top. Only a few very steep moments. With many water breaks and a 15 minute rest at the fire tower we clocked in at around 5 hours out and back. Best part was that it is mostly shaded the whole time which made the length bearable. Watch your footing as we did see a baby copperhead on the trail (surely mom was close by).

first 2 miles are enjoyable with mostly hard packed dirt, roots, and occasional rocks. the last mile made me almost turn around...we had our boxer dog on leash and she needed to be lifted at times. toward the top it gets really hard to keep on trail. we missed trail to tower to find an even better lookout. on way down, we found tower. I would do this again, with more daylight to enjoy the amazing views. my app and watch said it was over 8 miles.

Great payoff at the top with a fire tower.

First 2/3 of hike is quite easy going. Last 1/3 was a steep incline to the fire tower. Very manageable for us. We had our 11 year old son and Boston terrier with us. Would definitely do it again! Beautiful view!

It was a challenge and there was a lot of lovely fauna to see including a fresh water spring. Nice views at the top and when you’re done you’ll feel like you had a good day in nature and have gotten some great exercise too.

The entrance to the trailhead is crazy. We came in a jeep so it was a lot of fun, but I don't know how some of the smaller cars made it, there are some pretty big pot holes and none of it is paved. This hike was a lot harder than I had expected. I had read the reviews, but still figured it wouldn't be too bad since it was such a short hike. The trail was is good condition, but the tower needed some work. Toward the top of the tower it was completely open no chicken wire, etc around the stairs. The tower was locked but you can still climb up for great views. The bottom of the tower is all rock so it's a nice spot to sit and eat lunch before your way down. It had just rained all week before we went so it was a little slippery but overall a fun hike!

This hike is not long or difficult but is a little challenging. Some definite climbing on rock and do not ever try hike without proper footwear especially if it’s wet. The trail can be a little confusing at times and you will really need to look for the markers. Some stepper rock climbs in the middle of the trail. The really nice thing about the hike is the sneak peak views you get of the lakes while climbing to the top. Of course the best view is saved for last and the tower is open.

Very nice hike , no real challenges just a steady incline. Trail well marked and maintained. As with all firetowers, amazing view at the top.

Nice trail with a variety of scenery and picturesque waterfalls. The trail was very faint in places the first couple miles, but the blue markers helped. Some good views in spots at the summit, but it would be so much better if the fire tower were accessible. A gradual accent with no really steep sections. I really liked this hike to get away from the crowds.

Sunday aug 5 started at 830 to beat heat. 2 hours up about 40 minutes summit time and 1:20 back down. No bugs! Some water on trail but after all that rain it’s fine never had to walk through water. Creek beautiful being a bit higher

Had low expectations due to hunter and it’s skiing reputation but I was wrong. Less then a dozen people all day well all morning. Tim the Seward was friendly and informative. Very sturdy and beautiful tower. Awesome views 360 and guide in the tower that is circular shows the surrounding area and peaks. Reminder no ground views so climb is a must

Never would know a major nys ski area is so close. Trail is easy gravel and fast. Bring the permethrin for covering the clothes prior to hiking as a precaution. Great time of year to get out there and enjoy this season. The trip and the firetower made a great summer day.

Great hike for all ages and pups as well! Very easy and short hike. Great for beginners.

hiking
9 days ago

Very nice short hike. The Steward was very nice and informative. Not my favorite fire tower view, but still quite nice.

hiking
10 days ago

Great hike! The last part is definitely a bit challenging, but fine if you take your time. We had the mountain to ourselves at 7:30 AM on a Friday — just passed a few groups on our way down. My 12 year-old son wanted me to warn you all about the cobwebs this early though!

hiking
10 days ago

Absolutely amazing hike and work out! I’m in fairly decent shape already but this made my thighs burn a little and I had a nice sweat by the time I reached the top. It took me an hour with 3 stops for water. On the way back down I didn’t stop and made it in 27 min. It’s all up the mountain and lots of rocks and roots. Not too many places are flat until you get closer to the top. The view is incredible. Make sure you go to the top of the fire tower and take pictures. You won’t want to miss that! I will be back again!

hiking
11 days ago

The views from the tower are really good. The trail towards the top gets steep but it's all worth it when you see the views. The trail breaks off on the left after the rangers cabin about 50 yards give or take. The trail was easy to miss due to no markers. It's marked now, with red DEC marker.

hiking
11 days ago

Very wet trail and top of fire tower is locked

hiking
13 days ago

Nice hike. Brought friends and kids (3 and 5 yrs old). This was the first hike ever for the kids and they did great! 5 year old walked the whole way and the 3 yr old made it almost the whole way up, and did make it the whole way down. Volunteer at the cabin at the top wrote them little certificates for climbing the fire tower, which the kids LOVED. Hiked as first of the Tupper Lake Triad.

Started easy then get harder after the cabin. Last 1/2 miles is very steep, almost gain 1000 elevation. Trail easy to follow, no view on top unless climb up the tower. Solid 1 1/2 hike up and 1 hr hike down with fee short stop.

tougher then we thought. rain made the hike more technical. very nice view from the fire tower.

Nice hike for the family. For us, it was easy- not something I’d remark as moderate- as we do a great deal of hikes. We checked in early to beat the rush. It’s a popular hike, especially during peak season. Our son loved it. Had no issues making our way to the fire tower and back in a reasonable amount of time. Going up we passed no one, however coming down we passed so many! If you want to beat the crowd, definitely get there early.

hiking
18 days ago

The first three miles were easy, nothing strenuous. The final push to the summit is steep and very tough! It is nearly a mile of serious climbing. It was a challenge for me, but my son basically jogged up to the summit, arriving 30 minutes before me. The view from the cliff face is spectacular. Push on to the tower about 50yards further, and take in the 360 views. The tower needs a little work, as some fencing was missing from this higher levels, but it’s strong otherwise. We did the climb after 5 days of rain, a little slick and muddy, but not terrible. The descent was difficult in the steepest section, after that it’s an enjoyable walk back to the vehicle. My app said it was 8.1 miles round trip.

greatlittle hike not too strenuous it was long but easy

Nice easy trail for family

The first 1.5 miles are an easy walk through a nice mixed timber forest. There are a few blow downs to hop over or walk around, but nothing troubling. As the elevation slowly increases the trail enters a seasonal stream bed with loose rocks, small and large, but there is a path on the side of most of this portion that is easier. As the trail levels off it would seem that you have reached the top, but this is what is called the “false summit.” Shortly you will begin to descend, which is a psychological bummer, before you start to gain elevation to the actual summit. Just past the remains of the observers cabin the trail gets steeper. It’s a short steep section up to the summit and tower. The tower views are beautiful. Some of the steps on the tower are a bit sketchy, but intact. Overall a great hike, with a couple of challenging sections. Highly recommend. With a generous time at the summit, which I had to myself, I spent a total of 02:53:00 on this trail.

Nice easy hike with wonderful views from the summit and tower.

I’ve never climbed a mountain and I chose to do Balsam Lake Mountain because of the fire tower for my birthday. M

Does the trail have spectacular views? No, but it’s well marked which is exactly what I was looking for.

The last 3/4 miles were brutal, but in a good way. Once I got to the summit it all became worth it.

The weather was great, the views were breathtaking, and I couldn’t have asked for anything more.

10/10, would recommend.

Awesome hike! I suggest you go early bald mountain is very popular! Beautiful view from the fire tower

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